Pros and Cons of Taking Online Virtual Classes aka "Distance Learning"


Distance  Learning, or Virtual Classes, is quickly becoming a valid option for many prospective university students because of it's many positive aspects, but do those factors apply to every student wishing to pursue secondary school?

The Plus Side of Online Learning

Convenience is something that everyone in our modern world looks for, and most online courses offer an out-standing opportunity to 'create' your own schedule. At the very least, earning an education with Distance Learning is efficient time-wise.

With a traditional MBA, or in-class education, everything must revolve about the time of your classes. That includes work, social interaction, and any other daily events.

However, with Distance Learning, self motivation is a huge key factor. Although the thought of gaining a degree with minimal strict guidelines, or a solid schedule, may sound like the better option, it's harder than it seems.

Online learning requires excellent time management skills, motivation, new-found computer literacy, discipline and definitely forms an adult-like independence that'll get you ready for the real world with a dramatic wake up call. Everything depends on you (Yes, that means class material, completed assignments, book readings, and even self-taught information), so be prepared.

Evangeline Hanson, a senior high-school student who successfully completed a secondary-language course online, says, "I think students who work better at their own pace, and in a quiet environment, would get the most out of this (online) course. It allows the student to get full understanding before moving onto the next task and although there are no teachers standing in the same room, there are always people in the course who are only an email away."

"Some students learn better in a classroom environment rather than one on one, but I think both options should be available to all students," she told; "Online courses take patience and Independence because sometimes if help is needed, you'll have to wait for a response. Where as in a classroom, help is always available nearly instantly."

Is Distance Learning a legitimate education?

One of the most asked questions about earning a degree online is: Will future companies look at my education the same as someone with an MBA?

The answer is yes, absolutely.

Society has geared up into a fast-paced, technology run environment, and employers are not longer holding a stigma around online graduates. In fact, a survey conducted in 2012 by Society for Human Resource Management concluded that 79% of employers hired a candidate with an online degree.

"The recruiters who look at our hybrid EMBA really don't differentiate between the two, " Robert Bruner, Business Administration professor at University of Virginia, states; "I would say the online program, even the hybrids, require a higher level of maturity and determination to make the online components a meaningful and successful learning experience."

A Distance Education course can be completely valid as the in-class course, but that also depends on if your program is accredited.

Make sure that your university, and chosen course, is accredited by the U.S Department of Education. This makes your education legit in the eyes of your future employer, and can give you reassurance on your decision.

"Education doesn't only happen in the classroom," Hanson points out.

With Distance Learning, the idea of taking classroom material outside of class is tried and true.

Young woman with laptop computer.

Most online courses require one-on-one meetings with instructors every so often, and some even offer iClass sessions. iClass is a collection of students taking the same online course who meet via internet to discuss classroom topics.

Online gatherings, like iClass, offer students a chance to interact with students from different areas while ensuring that each student maintains a relevant understanding of the subject being learnt.

Education has changed in many ways, for the better.

Distance Education was first invented for the average middle-class family member who wanted to enhance their education, or change careers, while remaining in the same area with family.

A lot has changed since those times, and largely accredited universities like Harvard, Stanford, and MIT are now offering the same excellence in an MBA, though online courses.

Whether you decide to experience the full university experience on campus, or if you decide to conveniently earn your full education online, there are now an abundance of options at your fingertips! Good luck choosing a course that suits your needs, and hopefully the information above will be of good use.

References used:

  1. Franklin EDU
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